Archer Aviation’s New Senior Exec Has Extensive Commercial Aviation Background

Archer’s chief operating officer, urban air mobility, Tom Anderson, was formerly with Breeze Airways, ATR Aircraft, Airbus, Virgin America, and Boeing.

Electric air taxi developer Archer Aviation (NYSE: ACHR) increased its commercial aviation expertise Tuesday by naming longtime executive Tom Anderson as its chief operating officer, urban air mobility.  

Anderson’s commercial aviation career dates back more than 30 years, including high-level positions at Airbus, Boeing, Virgin America, ATR Aircraft, and most recently, as chief operating officer at Breeze Airways. 

California-based Archer brings Anderson in as it moves toward establishing operations for a planned commercial air taxi service using electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft currently under development.

Archer is one of a few air taxi developers planning to manufacture eVTOLs as well as operate an air taxi service. Backed by United Airlines, Archer and United have formed a joint eVTOL advisory committee to help develop its airline operations. 

With Archer, Anderson will oversee and direct future urban air mobility (UAM) operations, focusing on commercial operations. 

“I’ve spent my entire career focused on developing and scaling commercial aviation operations,” Anderson said in a news release. “I am looking forward to advancing the company towards its commercial launch, capitalizing on the company’s strategic partnerships and introducing the public to the benefits of urban air mobility.” 

The company’s battery-powered, tilt-rotor air taxi test article—dubbed Maker— began uncrewed hover testing last December. Archer has made significant progress toward its goal of receiving FAA certification for its eVTOL in time to enter service in 2024. 

‘Deepening Its Bench’

Archer CEO Adam Goldstein indicated Anderson’s hiring was part of the company’s broader goal aimed at “deepening its bench of aviation’s best and brightest talent.”

Anderson also served as part of the team that launched JetBlue Airways. 

While overseeing UAM operations, Anderson will develop an air mobility ecosystem. 

A large part of eVTOL ecosystems will include establishing takeoff and landing sites, known as vertiports, to support passenger routes in each air taxi market. 

Last year, Archer partnered with REEF, the largest vehicle parking operator in North America, to develop vertiport facilities on existing infrastructure, and committed to Miami, Florida, as “a flagship launch market.” 

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